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Cub Creek, Arkansas
Report by Marc W. McCord

~ 9 miles

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SOAR Inflatable Canoes - Somewhere On A River

General Description


Newton and Pope Counties of northwestern Arkansas, near Frog Bayou, Lee Creek, the Mulberry and Arkansas Rivers, and Fort Smith. Devils Den and Lake Fort Smith State Parks are nearby.

Distance from major cities

Fort Smith miles; Fayetteville miles; Little Rock miles; Texarkana miles: Kansas City miles; Oklahoma City miles; Dallas miles; Austin miles; San Antonio miles; Houston miles; Albuquerque miles; Phoenix miles; Denver miles; Salt Lake City miles (all distances are approximate, and depend upon starting point, destination at the river and route taken.)

Water Quality and Flow Rates

Best time to go

Cub Creek is usually navigable when the Mulberry River is in or very near flood stage (6.0 feet or more.) Navigable flows occur after significant local rainfall, at about the same time Frog Bayou, Big Piney Creek and Little Piney Creek will all be running.

Hazards to navigation

The hazards to be encountered on Cub Creek are from swift currents, a narrow channel, dead-fall strainers and log jams, tight bends, two barbed wire fences near mile 6.0 (the middle of the run) and cold water temperature. Rapids are in the Class II to III range, though they can become more technical as flows increase, and may often be located at the same places where other obstacles combine to make picking a good line difficult, but very necessary. Often, there will be little time to assess the situation before confronting it. Solid intermediate level whitewater skills in canoes or kayaks are necessary for runs here, and swiftwater rescue training (especially mechanical haul systems setup and use) would be an added benefit.

River Access Points

Campgrounds and accommodations

There are no campgrounds located along Cub Creek. However, Shores Lake Campground, above the dam on nearby Hurricane Creek, offers great campsites with limited amenities. Devil's Den State Park, just west of US Highway 71 and the put-in for this run, offers excellent campsites and facilities. Byrd's Canoe Rental (501-667-4066) and Turner Bend Campground (479-667-3641) on the Mulberry River offer excellent camping facilities. Many other campgrounds are available in and around Ozark National Forest east of US Highway 71 and Frog Bayou near Rudy.

Liveries, outfitters and shuttle services

There are no known liveries or outfitters located on Cub Creek. Rentals and shuttles may be available from outfitters in the Mulberry River including Byrd's Canoe Rental (501-667-4066); Turner Bend (501-667-3641); Wayfarer of the Ozarks (501-667-4998). Bring your own boats and gear, and run your own shuttles if not contracting with one of the Mulberry River outfitters for rentals and shuttles.

Reviewer's comments

Technical Data
Class Rating II to III
Length 9 miles
Min. Stage 6.0' (Mulberry River Gauge)
Opt. Stage
Max. Stage
First Put-in
Lat. / Long.
Last Take-out
Lat. / Long.
Elevation msl
Gradient fpm
USGS Gauge Web: (Mulberry River)
Boats Canoes, Kayaks
Season Local rainfall or dam release dependent
Permits No

Arkansas Canoe Club

Canoeman River Guide Service - Guided river trips in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and Utah

Lone Star Paddler - the paddlesports web site of Marc W. McCord

Click the links below for information regarding the section of the Arkansas River and its tributaries where you want to paddle.

[ Arkansas River Homepage ] [ Arkansas River ] [ Bayou Metro ] [ Big Piney Creek ] [ Little Piney Creek ] [ Cadron Creek ]
[ Bayou Foursche LaFave ] [ Mulberry River ] [ Petit Jean River ] [ Frog Bayou ] [ Shoal Creek ] [ Lee Creek ] [ Hurricane Creek ]
[ Fall Creek ] [ Illinois Bayou ] [ Illinois Bayou North Fork ] [ Illinois Bayou Middle Fork ]

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Last updated September 10, 2014

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